We live in a world that is increasingly focused on self – what I want, what makes me happy, what benefits me. This self-centeredness runs contrary to the attitudes and priorities modeled by Jesus Christ and described in the Bible. As Christians, God calls us to develop attitudes that align with His will and character, not the values of the world around us. Cultivating godly attitudes takes intention, prayer, studying Scripture, and relying on the Holy Spirit to transform us from within.
In this post, we will explore 20 godly attitudes that believers should develop and ways you can start growing in these areas by God’s grace. As you read through this list, prayerfully ask the Lord to show you which attitudes He wants to strengthen in your life in this season.
- Godly attitudes originate from having the mind of Christ (Philippians 2:5).
- Our attitudes affect our actions and our witness to the world.
- Key godly attitudes include love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.
- Growing in godly attitudes requires spending time in Scripture, prayer, community, and intentionally putting off worldly values.
- The Holy Spirit empowers and enables us to develop Christlike attitudes as we yield to Him.
- Changing our attitudes happens one day at a time through small, consistent steps of obedience.
The defining mark of a follower of Jesus is a heart of love. When asked about the greatest commandment, Jesus replied, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:37-39). As an imitator of Christ, you are called to walk in love in all your relationships and view others through the lens of God’s unconditional love.
Ask the Holy Spirit each day to help you see people as God sees them. Pray for and bless those who hurt or mistreat you. Extend grace and forgiveness even when it’s difficult. Serve and meet needs without expecting anything in return. As you abide in Christ’s love, it will flow through you to others. “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another” (John 13:34-35).
True joy comes from an intimate relationship with Jesus. It’s not dependent on our circumstances, but rather rooted in the hope, peace, and comfort we have in Christ. Jesus said, “These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full” (John 15:11). As you walk closely with the Lord each day through prayer, Bible study, worship, and community, you’ll experience His supernatural joy.
This joy enables you to rejoice in all situations, even trials, because your primary source of joy comes from your unshakable spiritual connection with God. “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness” (James 1:2-3). You can ask Him to fill you with His joy daily. As your relationship with Christ deepens, your joy will also increase.
The world’s definition of peace focuses on the absence of conflict or struggle. But the Bible describes a “peace of God, which surpasses all understanding” that guards our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:7). This inner peace comes from trusting in God’s sovereignty and goodness regardless of circumstances. You can access it through prayer, petitioning God “with thanksgiving” and meditating on His truth (Philippians 4:6-7).
When you feel anxious or overwhelmed, take it to the Lord in prayer. Recite Scriptures about His promises and character. Remember that He is in control. As you seek God first, His peace will rule in your heart even in tumultuous times. “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7).
In a fast-paced, instant gratification oriented world, patience is a lost virtue. But God views patience as a holy attribute we should earnestly pursue. The Bible says, “The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience…” (Galatians 5:22). Ask the Holy Spirit each day to develop Christlike patience in you.
This involves waiting on God’s timing without complaining or rushing ahead of Him. It means bearing with people when they annoy you and avoiding unkind words. “Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you” (Ephesians 4:32). Patience grows as you spend time in prayer being still before the Lord. Let His eternal perspective adjust your temporal focus. “The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance” (2 Peter 3:9).
The Bible describes God’s kindness as leading us to repentance and salvation because He is rich in mercy (Romans 2:4, Ephesians 2:7). When we accept Christ, the Holy Spirit develops God’s kindness in us: “The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness…” (Galatians 5:22). Ask Him to help you be kind in word, deed, and thought toward others each day. Extend grace to those who least deserve it. Be compassionate and tenderhearted. Offer words of life that build others up.
Look for small acts of service you can do to ease someone’s burdens. Even when someone is unkind to you, choose kindness in return. “And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you” (Ephesians 4:32 NKJV). As you walk in the spiritual fruit of kindness, you’ll reveal God’s heart to those around you.
While people may do “good” things to gain the approval and praise of others, godly goodness flows from a pure heart that seeks to honor the Lord. The Bible says, “A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good…” (Luke 6:45 NKJV). When your motives are to glorify God and you rely on the Holy Spirit’s power to produce goodness through you, He receives all the credit.
The more time you spend reading the Word and communing with God in prayer, the more He can transform your desires and motivations to align with His perfect will. “Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another… But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection” (Colossians 3:12-14 NKJV). Keep your eyes fixed on Jesus as you follow His example of selfless, sacrificial goodness each day.
One of the main attributes of God highlighted in the Bible is His faithfulness. He remains loyal and keeps His promises despite our errors and failures. As His followers, we are called to emulate the same faithfulness in all areas of life – to our spouses, families, friends, church, workplace, and God. When you commit to something, follow through with integrity. Hold to biblical values no matter how much the culture shifts. Remain obedient to God’s commands each day through His power at work within you.
Even when you stumble and make mistakes, repent and get back on the path of righteousness, relying on God’s grace to help you press on. Pray for the Holy Spirit to develop steadfast faithfulness within you. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control” (Galatians 5:22-23 NKJV). Your faithfulness will point others to Christ.
The Bible describes Jesus as “gentle and lowly in heart” (Matthew 11:29). As His followers, we are called to reflect that same gentleness in our words, tone of voice, and treatment of others. The Greek word translated “gentleness” can also mean meekness or humility. Rather than asserting yourself and demanding your rights, allow the Holy Spirit to develop humility and patience in adversity. Listen compassionately to understand, not just reply. Be quick to forgive, not anger or retaliate. Speak gently and with self-control, even when provoked.
Walking in gentleness requires laying down pride and an “I deserve better” attitude to humbly serve others. Ask God to help you see interruptions and inconveniences as opportunities to demonstrate gentleness. “But the wisdom that is from above is…gentle, willing to yield…full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy” (James 3:17 NKJV). As you walk in spiritual gentleness, you’ll be more like Christ.
Many people view freedom as doing whatever you want, whenever you want. But the Bible teaches that true freedom comes through self-control empowered by the Holy Spirit. Every believer has access to His power to control physical desires, thoughts, time, words, and actions. When you yield to selfish gain or impulses, you become a slave to them. But in God’s strength, you can break free from any addictive or sinful pattern.
Stay immersed in Scripture and prayer, asking God to transform your heart and mind to crave eternity rather than fleeting worldly pleasures. Draw healthy boundaries around tempting situations. Refuse to dwell on lustful or impure thoughts. As you practice moment-by-moment self-control in the power of the Spirit, He will lead you to freedom. “For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age” (Titus 2:11-12).
We live in a culture that often dishonors authority, scoffs at biblical principles, and rebels against any perceived constraints on freedom. But as believers, God calls us to honor – to value, respect, revere, and show deference. This includes honoring God first and foremost in everything. We also honor our parents, pastors, bosses, leaders, and one another in the body of Christ. “Show respect for all men; love the brotherhood, fear God, honor the king” (1 Peter 2:17 NASB).
Ask the Holy Spirit to check your heart for attitudes of rebellion, criticism, or disrespect toward those He has placed in authority over you. Pray for them rather than maligning them. Disagree respectfully. Listen and follow their guidance with a humble, obedient spirit as unto the Lord. The more we honor Christlike leadership, the more we honor God’s design and order. Our attitudes should communicate honor at all times.
Because we’re all sinners, we inevitably hurt others, get hurt ourselves, and harbor offenses. But God calls believers to walk in ongoing forgiveness just as He forgives us through Christ (Ephesians 4:32). This attitude of forgiveness applies even when someone sins against us deliberately and leaves deep wounds. Forgiveness isn’t approving what someone did, but releasing that hurt and debt to the Lord rather than holding onto resentment and bitterness.
Pray each day for anyone who has hurt or offended you and ask the Holy Spirit to soften your heart, remembering the massive debt Christ forgave you. Don’t wait for an apology; forgive right away. God’s Word says, “Whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses” (Mark 11:25). As you walk in a lifestyle of forgiveness, you’ll be set free.
It’s easy to take for granted the many blessings in our lives – our health, loved ones, jobs, freedoms, churches, possessions, etc. But God calls us to live with a perspective of gratitude. When we realize everything good comes from His hand, it cultivates an attitude of thankfulness. Give thanks to the Lord first thing in the morning. Before meals, thank Him for your food. Thank Him for each person He brings across your path. And express gratitude for trials which teach you perseverance.
Focus on what you do have versus what’s missing or imperfect. Even in the midst of painful circumstances, you can thank God that He’s using it for your good, to refine you into His image. “Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18). An attitude of gratitude draws you closer to your Provider!
The world promotes self-confidence, but the Bible elevates humility. Jesus exemplified perfect humility by setting aside divine privileges, taking on flesh, and dying naked on a cross for our sins. He instructs us, “Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 18:4). Humility recognizes every good thing in your life is due to God’s grace, not your own effort. The more you grow spiritually, the more acutely aware you become of your need for Christ.
Cultivating humility requires intentionality. Spend time daily confessing your sins and weaknesses to God. Thank Him for any talents and remind yourself they originate from Him. Don’t seek credit or praise; deflect it to the Lord. Seek lower positions where you can serve others. “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you” (James 4:10). As you walk in humility, you create space for God’s glory to shine.
Fear and anxiety attempt to paralyze us from obeying God and confronting evil in the world. But as followers of Jesus, we don’t have to cower in cowardice. The Bible says, “For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control” (2 Timothy 1:7). When we rely fully on the Holy Spirit’s power, He gives us courage to face every challenge with boldness. This courage empowers us to do what’s right even when it’s difficult or dangerous.
Rather than avoiding ridicule by watering down your faith, ask God for courage to stand unwaveringly on His Word. If He leads you to confront or expose sinful issues, speak up with Spirit-empowered courage. Be strong and resolute as Joshua, who declared, “As for me and my house, we will serve the LORD” (Joshua 24:15). Stay grounded in Scripture and prayer, knowing the Lord goes before you as you walk in courage.
The book of Proverbs says, “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom” (Proverbs 9:10). As you spend time daily in prayer and God’s Word, asking for discernment, the Holy Spirit will guide you into truth and away from deception and folly. God’s wisdom manifests itself in our lives through righteous, just, and equitable words and deeds that align with His will. Walking in godly wisdom also involves heeding wise counsel from other believers who can provide guidance and accountability.
Ask the Lord for wisdom whenever you face a decision or dilemma. Study Scripture to understand His perspective. Avoid friendships and influences that pull you toward unwise choices. Be quick to hear and slow to speak (James 1:19). As you submit your will to God’s supreme wisdom and walk in obedience to Him, you’ll enjoy the fruit of a wise, spiritually discerning life.
It’s easy to fall into discontentment, restless chasing after more possessions, a better job title, different spouse, bigger home, or the next experience. The world wrongly teaches that acquiring more leads to happiness. But Scripture says, “Godliness with contentment is great gain… But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction” (1 Timothy 6:6,9).
True contentment comes from finding your satisfaction and worth in Christ alone. Bring your restless desires to Him in prayer. Readjust your priorities to value eternal rewards over fleeting worldly ones. Thank God for what you do have. Focus on serving others, not self-pleasure. “Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you’” (Hebrews 13:5). Contentment in Christ frees you from striving after wind.
People with integrity display consistent moral character in public and private. Their words match their deeds. They keep agreements and fulfill obligations even at personal cost. They speak truthfully, even when it’s difficult. The Bible says people with integrity walk blamelessly and “do what is righteous and just and faithful every day” (Luke 1:75).
Pray for the Holy Spirit to develop integrity within you. Let your “yes be yes” and your “no be no” as Jesus taught (Matthew 5:37). Don’t compromise your biblical convictions based on circumstances. Refuse to cut corners ethically or cheat to get ahead at work. Treat people fairly. Admit when you’re wrong. Keep your promises. Apologize for mistakes. God’s Word says, “Whoever walks in integrity walks securely…” (Proverbs 10:9).
Though most of the world lives by a scarcity mindset of accumulating more for themselves, God’s economy is one of radical generosity. As His children, we follow Christ’s example of selfless giving. The Bible instructs, “Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver” (2 Corinthians 9:7). When you give freely of time, talents, and treasures to serve others, it reflects God’s overflowing generosity toward you.
Cultivating a lifestyle of generosity starts with giving God your first and best in all areas – time, energy, resources. Then look for ways to generously bless others through acts of service, hospitality, and financial gifts to further God’s work. Give quietly without expecting anything in return. “Whoever brings blessing will be enriched, and one who waters will himself be watered” (Proverbs 11:25). As you sow generously, God promises generous blessing in return.
The Bible describes God as merciful, gracious, patient, and slow to anger. He extends mercy to us, so we are called to reflect His heart by showing mercy to others. This means forgoing wrath and punishment that could be justly deserved, instead compassionately forgiving an offense or fault. Showing mercy also involves reaching out to help and serve those in need and distress. As you receive God’s daily mercy, it will flow through you.
Ask the Holy Spirit to make you more aware of people around you who need mercy – the poor, hurting, lost, overlooked, alone. Pray that God would break your heart for what breaks His. Look at others through the lens of Christ’s mercy. Be quick to forgive and slow to judge. Extend compassion even when it’s not convenient. Reach out to the marginalized. God said, “I desire mercy… rather than sacrifice” (Matthew 9:13). Walking in mercy demonstrates Christ’s love.
20. Dependence on God
We live in a self-sufficient society that highly values independence and self-reliance. But the Bible calls believers to an attitude of total dependence on God and His strength. Jesus said, “I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:5). Remain mindful that apart from Christ, you can accomplish nothing of eternal value.
Start each morning acknowledging your dependence on Him. Pray throughout the day, relying on His wisdom, discernment and power. Put no confidence in your own strength or abilities – boast only in what God can do through your yieldedness. This attitude of dependence on the Spirit frees you from striving and anxiety. Rest in the truth that the battle belongs to the Lord (1 Samuel 17:47). He is faithful to equip and sustain those who humbly rely on Him.
Changing your attitudes happens by degree, not overnight. But as you cooperate with the Holy Spirit’s transforming work, He will shape your mindset and beliefs to align with godly virtues found in Scripture. Walking in attitudes that honor Christ makes you His light in a dark world. People will be drawn to the supernatural love, joy, peace, kindness, and goodness He manifests through you.
The essential starting place is spending consistent time praying, confessing sin, renewed your mind through Scripture, fellowshipping with believers, and being filled with the Spirit. He will change you from the inside out as you yield to Him more and more each day. By God’s grace, we can increasingly reflect the attitude of our Savior who modeled perfect love and humility. May these godly attitudes mark our lives for His glory.